The University of Michigan is ranked No. 6 on Kiplinger’s list of 100 Best Values in Public Colleges for 2014, moving up five spots from last year.
The ranking highlights colleges and universities that combine outstanding education with economic value.
Kiplinger’s assesses quality according to a number of measurable standards, including the admission rate, the percentage of students who return for sophomore year, the student-faculty ratio and the four-year graduation rate. Cost criteria include low sticker prices, abundant financial aid and low average debt at graduation.
U-M and the University of Wisconsin-Madison were the only two Big Ten schools in the top 10.
“The college landscape today is very different — tuition increases and student debt dominate the national conversation surrounding higher education,” said Janet Bodnar, editor of Kiplinger’s Personal Finance. “This year’s top 100 schools have made admirable strides to maintain academic integrity and standards while meeting the financial needs of their students.”
The total tuition for an in-state student at U-M this year is $13,142, and 70 percent of in-state undergraduates get financial aid. Total tuition for an out-of-state student is $40,392, and 50 percent of out-of-state undergraduates get financial aid. Among the nation’s major public research universities, U-M provides the third-highest amount of institutional aid to students.
In June, the Board of Regents approved a budget for fiscal year 2014 that contained the smallest in-state tuition increase in nearly 30 years and the largest-ever increase in financial aid. Need-based financial aid for undergraduates increased by 13.7 percent, marking the eighth time in the past nine years that aid has increased by at least 10 percent.